We all have many relationships in life with friends, family, colleagues, acquaintances, service providers, social groups etc. Most of these relationships make us happy and emotionally strong. It does not matter who you are, whether you are an introvert or an extrovert, these relationships are important for your wellbeing. Yes, these relationships are no doubt very important to have, but overdependence or under dependence on them can create turmoil in life. One should strive to strike a balance in your relationships for your sanity and peace. One of the common mistake we make in these relationships, including me is that we fall into the trap of being unhappy because we perceive that a person or group is not supporting us 100 percent of the time. We think their love for us has diminished or they care less for us. We feel they are tired of us. I used to get really riled up about this before and this used to make me very irritated, angry and sad. How can they not be there for me was my thinking? This feeling became exasperated after the many life-changing adversities I faced in the past few years. However, slowly but surely, I started to see this in a different light. Maybe I was getting older and supposedly wiser, maybe the second lease on life made me more empathetic towards others or simply I matured or whatever.
If I saw fatigue in any of my relationships related to their involvement or intensity with me, I started to not take it personally. Yes, it is no doubt hard not to take it personally. But it has to be done. You have to give them the benefit of the doubt. You have to realize that there is a lot going on in those people’s lives and it is not just their relationship with you. No one, including the people closest to you can be there 100 percent of the time. Just because they are not there 100 percent, it does not mean they don’t care about you or anything else like that. Please understand they are just human like you are. Also, many people don’t even realize that they are invariably doing it.
I wish I had this realization much before. It would have saved me a lot of angst and heartburn. Well, it is never too late for one to realize this. Constantly remind yourself of the bond and connect you have with the various people in your life. Remember the good things and experiences you have had with these people. And also remind yourself that they are not perfect just as you are not. Be more understanding. I am not naïve to say that all the people in your life will care about you or love you… some don’t and drop like flies from the relationship. But you cannot stress about those few. Most do care about you, love you, and try to be there for you and you should cherish that. Don’t get hung up on those few. You can’t get mad or sad about the choice they have made. At the end of the day, it is their choice. As the ancient Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu says ‘Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes, don’t resist them; that only creates sorrow. Let reality be reality. Let things flow naturally forward in whatever way they like.’